By Nishant Arora
The COVID-19 onslaught has accelerated the pace of IT modernisation and digital transformation via Cloud-driven solutions in the vast public sector in India and various state governments are fast embracing the Cloud technology to reduce the infection rate while efficiently managing the lockdown, a top global Amazon Web Services (AWS) executive has stressed.
According to Teresa Carlson, Vice President, Worldwide Public Sector, AWS (the Cloud arm of e-commerce giant Amazon with over $40 billion annual run rate), as COVID-19 continues to spread, the global health emergency will only be resolved by governments, businesses, academia and individuals working together to better understand this virus and ultimately find a cure.
“Research institutes, scientists and organisations working on diagnostics need reliable, scalable compute power, which AWS can deliver to them along with industry-leading services like analytics and machine learning, so they can process and analyse large data sets and iterate quickly,” Carlson told IANS.
Today, from state governments to startups, India is fast harnessing AWS Cloud technology for scale, speed and agility and above all, data security.
Quantela, a provider of smart urban infrastructure automation, has developed CoVER (COVID-19 emergency response) platform in India.
“CoVER is used by government authorities across 10 cities in India to monitor, manage, track, diagnose, communicate, collaborate and prevent the impact of COVID-19. In one of the large cities in southern India that has so far reported far fewer COVID-19 cases, they used CoVER to track about 120 hospitals, 600 ambulances, and 400 isolation beds, and monitor people in quarantine,” informed Carlson.
The officials attributed real-time access to data and quick decision-making as among the key measures that helped the city contain the spread of COVID-19 even in densely-populated areas, and significantly helping reduce the infection rate in the city.
The India eGovernments Foundation collaborated with AWS to develop the National COVID-19 e-Pass solution within 72 hours to provide a digital pass management system that supports multiple state governments, to manage the lockdown while ensuring smooth movement of the essential service providers across and within states.
“Since its launch, more than 50,000 organizations have been evaluated, and more than 6,00,000 daily passes have been issued on the platform. It has been deployed in Haryana, Punjab, Delhi, Telangana, Puducherry, Odisha and Karnataka,” the AWS executive noted.
TruFactor is a platform that provides mobile-first consumer data and insights. The company has a patented platform that ingests, filters, and processes over 100TB of data anonymously, using AI to produce graphs that combine digital signals, physical people movement data, and demographics to help tackle spread of COVID-19.
TruFactor has listed datasets on AWS Data Exchange, a service that makes it easy for millions of AWS customers worldwide to securely find, subscribe, and use third-party data in the cloud.
Innovaccer, a San Francisco-based healthcare technology company, with offices in India and Asia, launched a COVID-19 Management System that can conduct early community-based triage of COVID-19 patients through automated assessments in minutes.
The multi-platform system is currently in use by the governments in Goa and Puducherry in India. Within three days of launch, more than 25,000 citizens in Goa had already used the app to assess their vulnerability to COVID-19.
Mumbai-based Qure.ai, a healthcare startup built on AWS, has developed a machine learning-powered solution called ‘qXR’ which uses X-rays to classify patients as high, medium, or low risk for COVID-19 in less than a minute.
Built on data from more than 2.5 million radiology scans, qXR is capable of detecting problem areas and abnormalities that are indicative of COVID-19.
Since its deployment in over 40 sites across South Asia, Europe and North America, it is identifying approximately 5,000 suspected cases on a weekly basis. Qure.ai is currently in talks with the state governments to use its solution in government hospitals, large clinics and healthcare centres across the country.
AWS announced the Diagnostic Development Initiative (DDI) in March this year.
“This is a programme to support customers who are working to bring better, more accurate, diagnostics solutions to market faster, and promote better collaboration across organizations that are working on similar problems,” Carlson told IANS.
This includes an initial investment of $20 million to accelerate diagnostic research, innovation, and development to speed collective understanding and detection of COVID-19 and other innovative diagnostic solutions to mitigate future infectious disease outbreaks.
“We are actively working with 35 projects that have been submitted and are still accepting more applications,” said Carlson.
(The author can be reached at [email protected])